Come next year, the largest endowment in higher education will have a new manager.

Jane Mendillo ’80 SOM ’84, the chief executive of the Harvard Management Company — which manages Harvard’s $32.7 billion endowment — announced Tuesday that she would step down at the end of the year. Upon her arrival in 2008, Mendillo was charged with overseeing the rebound of the school’s endowment after the financial recession.

Mendillo’s successor has yet to be named.

William Jarvis ’77, managing director of the Commonfund Institute, said that the size and complexity of the Harvard Management Company requires the leader to have both investment strategy and operational management experience.

While Harvard’s endowment has grown since losing 27 percent of its value during the 2008-2009 fiscal year, the university’s annualized returns have fallen behind those of their Ivy League peers.